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Usman Mohammad presented the CPE/CLE Course: The Pitfalls of Foreign Asset Reporting on December 10, 2019

Course Description

This course explored foreign asset reporting on Form 8938, with a focus on issues that can be traps for the unwary.  This includes differences between foreign account reporting on Form 8938 versus the FBAR, asset valuation issues that impact certain classes of taxpayers filing Form 8938, and the statute of limitations and civil penalties associated with Form 8938.  Usman also discussed suggested best practices in light of these issues.

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The Pitfalls of Foreign Asset Reporting

Course Description

This course will explore foreign asset reporting on Form 8938, which will focus on issues that can be traps for the unwary.  This includes differences between foreign account reporting on Form 8938 versus the FBAR, asset valuation issues that impact certain classes of taxpayers filing Form 8938, and the statute of limitations and civil penalties associated with Form 8938.  We will also discuss suggested best practices in light of these issues.

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Caroline D. Ciraolo Participated in the Panel Entitled "Tax Fraud Red Flags" at the ABA/ABA Financial Crimes Enforcement Conference on December 9-10, 2019

Caroline D. Ciraolo participated in the panel entitled "Tax Fraud Red Flags" at the ABA/ABA Financial Crimes Enforcement Conference on December 9 and 10, 2019, in Washington, D.C. 

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Sidney Kess ‘The dean of tax education’ Listed in Accounting Today: Top 100 Most Influential People

The Top 100 Most Influential People - The thought leaders and change-makers who are shaping accounting

One million tax practitioners: That’s how many Sid Kess has taught, and it would be enough to justify his influence — but beyond being the pre-eminent educator in the field and the force behind many of the teaching methods currently in use, he’s a mentor to many and an inspiration to many more.

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Caroline D. Ciraolo Participated in the Panel "Balancing Tax Planning, Advocacy, and Professional Ethics" at Practicing Law Institute's 2019 Tax Strategies Program in Los Angeles, CA

Caroline D. Ciraolo participated in the panel "Balancing Tax Planning, Advocacy, and Professional Ethics: The Rules that Every Tax Advisor Should Know," at Practicing Law Institute's 2019 Tax Strategies for Corporate Acquisitions, Dispositions, Spin-Offs, Joint Ventures, Financings, Reorganizations & Restructurings program in Los Angeles, CA on December 6, 2019. 

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K&F Partner Caroline Ciraolo Recognized as Top Rated Tax Attorney in Maryland and D.C.

Baltimore (December 6, 2019) – Kostelanetz & Fink LLP is pleased to announce that partner Caroline D. Ciraolo has been selected for inclusion on the 2020 Maryland Super Lawyers list as a “Top Rated Tax Attorney in Baltimore, MD.” Ciraolo was previously included on the Maryland Super Lawyers list from 2009 to 2015 (Top Ten 2013-2015; Top 25 Women since 2009) prior to serving as the Acting Assistant Attorney General of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Tax Division from 2015 to 2017.

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Bryan Skarlatos presented a CLE program entitled "Ethics for Tax Lawyers: Answers to Your Most Difficult Questions" on December 5, 2019

The tax law is complicated and the right answer is not always clear. How sure do you have to be before you can tell a client it is okay to take a deduction, exclude income or characterize income as capital gain?  Can you accept what a taxpayer tells you, or do you have to audit a taxpayer’s records?  When can the taxpayer be subject to penalties?  And, when can you as the advisor be subject to penalties? 

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Caroline D. Ciraolo Participated on the Panel "Application of Authority in the Changing World of Deference" at the 67th Annual Taxation Conference held at the University of Texas School of Law in Austin, TX

Caroline D. Ciraolo participated on the panel "Application of Authority in the Changing World of Deference" at the 67th Annual Taxation Conference held at the University of Texas School of Law in Austin, TX on December 5, 2019. 

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Federal Criminal Tax Charges and DOJ Tax Division Conference Requests

By Caroline Rule
ABA Section of Litigation, Criminal Litigation Committee
December 5, 2019

Always request a DOJ Tax Division conference as soon as it appears that your client may face federal criminal tax charges.

Suppose that you have a client who can afford for you to travel to Washington, D.C., and who

  • is undergoing a sensitive, or “eggshell,” IRS audit that may lead to the matter being transferred from the civil side of the IRS to IRS Criminal Investigation (CI);
  • is already, or is likely to be, under investigation by CI;
  • is the target or subject of a grand jury investigation that may involve tax issues; or
  • is in any other way likely to be the subject of a federal criminal tax investigation.

If this is the case, you should immediately write to the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) Tax Division, Criminal Enforcement Section (“Tax Division”) and request a conference in the event that your client’s matter is referred there.

This is because, unlike all other federal crimes, tax crimes may not be prosecuted by a local U.S. Attorney’s Office without prior approval from the central DOJ. See 28 C.F.R. § 0.70 (authority over “criminal proceedings under the internal revenue laws” is assigned to the Assistant Attorney General, Tax Division); United States Attorneys’ Manual (USAM) § 6-4.200 (1997).

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Megan Brackney presented a CLE program entitled “Walking Through the Various States of the Partnership Audit Rule Process" on December 4, 2019

Megan Brackney presented at the American Law Institute course entitled “Representing Partnerships in Tax Audits, Controversies, and Litigation with the IRS,” on December 4, 2019.

The new partnership audit rules represent the most substantial change to audits in almost four decades. For partnerships, including LLCs taxed as partnerships, the opening of audits at this time and into the future will be governed by the new regime. In application, the new audit rules can significantly change audits and litigations, including who is responsible for tax payments and how deficiencies are attributed to partnerships, equating to a monumental tax procedure paradigm shift. Many practitioners possess a general understanding of these changes, but few possess an in-depth understanding of the impact these new rules will have. This program got down to the brass tacks of what the new audit rules look like in action - at formation, during the audit process, and on appeal, so that you can make more out of your pre-game planning!

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